In a statement to Roar, outgoing KCLSU President Salma Hussain announced she has successfully lobbied the university to allow a second student representative onto the King’s College Council.
The King’s College London (KCL) Council is the university’s highest governing body, currently consisting of 21 members. KCLSU’s VP Postgraduate will become the 22nd member of the Council, and the only other student representative besides each year’s KCLSU President.
Ms Hussain’s success comes after “more than 10 years” of campaigning. As she told Roar in an exclusive statement: “I managed to accomplish something previous presidents have been working on for years. […] This means we can now feed into decision making at the highest levels, giving us a voice in matters surrounding pensions, student mental health, BME, attainment gap, and more.”
In an announcement on the KCLSU website, Ms Hussain explained the choice of VP Postgraduate as the Council’s second student representative: “Postgraduates are a really underrepresented and under-engaged student population at King’s, with very different problems to Undergrads. Fun fact: they make up over 50% of the student population. Along with many other reasons, this is why I went for VP Postgraduate.”
“This is my legacy, being able to ensure that needs of students are heard and acted upon.”
Current members of the Council include Professor Shitij Kapur, the university’s newest President & Principal, as well as Professor Evelyn Welch, who served as interim Principal following Ed Byrne’s resignation and is widely known for her comments regarding the student experience during the Covid-19 pandemic. The Council is presently chaired by Lord Geidt, against whom a vote of no-confidence was recently filed by the King’s College London University & College Union.
According to minutes publicly available on the KCL website, matters of note discussed by the Council in recent months include potential “reputational issues” faced by King’s as the result of the Israel-Palestine conflict, student mental health caused by Covid-19, and the blended teaching method recently confirmed to be continuing into next year.
Ms Hussain will be replaced by incoming KCLSU President Zahra Syed from August 1 as the Student Officers leadership hands over. The role of VP Postgraduate is currently vacant following the resignation of then-incumbent Henna Ramchandani in June.